Last Updated on 22 July 2016
The Traditional Latin Mass has been celebrated in a relatively unchanged form throughout nearly all of the Church's history and it is this Mass which Father Frederick Faber once described as "the most beautiful thing this side of heaven". Although the Mass has, at various times, incurred minor modifications to its liturgy, notably in 1570 and 1962, Pope Paul VI promulgated a new missal in 1969, which came into effect in 1970. This new rite of Mass was radically different from the traditional Latin Mass which preceded it. Between 1970 and 1984 the Vatican restricted the celebration of the Traditional Latin Mass. In October 1984, following the issue of the indult Quattuor Abhinc Annos from Pope John Paul II, permission to celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass became at the discretion of the local bishop. In July 1988 Pope John Paul II issued the motu proprio Ecclesia Dei Adflicta which, among other things, required that respect be shown for the feelings of all those who are attached to the Latin liturgical tradition. The status of the Traditional Latin Mass changed again on 14 September 2007 as a result of Pope Benedict XVI's motu proprio Summorum Pontificum.